Is STREtek® the solution to the UK's birch plywood shortages?

 Shortages of birch plywood are increasing and prices are over double to what they were a year ago.

With about 80% of the global birch plywood production coming from Russia, coupled with recent legislation having made it illegal to import it into Europe since 10th July 2022, there is now a European supply gap needing to be plugged for well over 100,000 m3/month. The  U.K.’s share alone is close to 9,000m3/month. On top of this, increased production costs linked directly to the increased costs of logs , chemicals for the resins and energy to run the factory are occurring. 

So how will the birch plywood shortage be plugged?

The trouble is, birch plywood is a difficult product to substitute. But why?

To start with, we have the species birch (betula pendula) slowly grown due to the climate, producing a dense, consistent, close-grained hardwood with excellent strength, peeling and gluing properties.

Then from these logs, a plywood is manufactured with a multi-laminated core construction with minimal core gaps/overlaps , if any at all , thicker face veneers than many other plywood panels all with tight thickness and dimensional tolerances.

STREtek logo

With no off the shelf alternative solution presenting itself, the way forward was begging for a technical plywood to be created with similar characteristics to the birch plywood construction and this is how STREtek® was born.

STREtek® is an FSC technical hardwood throughout plywood solution, with a multi-lamination core construction , along with one-piece plug-free thick faces, tight thickness and dimensional tolerances, exterior class 3 glue-line ,available in both Poplar Throughout and in a higher density Beech faced Eucalyptus option.